Published: 17th August 2021
#ThrowbackToday: The hazardous nature of e-waste revealed by Greenpeace Int'l report
In today's #TBT, we tell you about a gut-wrenching report put out by Greenpeace International regarding recycling electronics wastes in China and India and the menace it is causing. Here's more on it
Every action has an equal opposite reaction. So the electronic boom that we are seeing is naturally leading to a lot of e-waste as well. Now here's more about a scary report by Greenpeace International called Recycling Electronics Wastes in China and India: Workplace and Environmental Contamination which was out on August 17, 2005.
The argument that the report made was that while people were quick to replace their electronic devices, the recycling and disposal of these products was proving to be a menace, especially the hazardous chemical used to make them. Plus, the ‘e-waste’ recycling sector was largely unregulated. For the study, over 70 samples, including industrial waste, indoor dust, soil, river sediment and groundwater, were collected from Guiyu Town in Guangdong Province in Southern China and the suburbs of New Delhi, India. These were collected from sites where component separation, plastic shredding, open burning, acid processing and other processes were followed. Here's the most comprehensive conclusion from the report:
Both wastes and hazardous chemicals used in the processing are commonly handled with little regard for the health and safety of the workforce or surrounding communities and with no regard for the environment. Overall, the result is severe contamination of the workplace and adjacent environment with a range of toxic metals and persistent organic contaminants